Jun scoured the top of the hill after the sun set.
Since there was barely any light, he decided that their search is finally over.
Besides the monolith, there was nothing else of interest at the resting area.
There are moments when he hears someone laughing but he was sure that he was alone in the area. He examined the monolith and couldn't understand what is written on it. He did the most logical thing to do, after experiencing all this mystical events, and channeled energy into the monolith.
When the gray monolith started absorbing his energy, he finally felt relieved. Since the monolith was absorbing his energy, that means something should be happening soon. And that means that he didn't waste the whole day for nothing.
Just as before his energy hit a dangerously low level, the monolith shone and bursts out white energy that slowly surrounded him.
The white energy seeped into his pores and was absorbed into his body.
He could feel the warmth that once surrounded him, instantly circulating inside his body.
[Description] You have received a blessing from the altar. Increase experience gain two-fold for three days. You can't receive another blessing for seven days.]
Jun felt satisfied since his reward was finally given to him. He felt more excited after learning of what he received. With this blessing he received, he quickly set his plans for the next few days.
Since the blessing lasted for three days and he wouldn't be able to receive it for the next four days, he planned to utilize the blessing to his maximum capability. The next few days would be a slaughter!
With his goal finally achieved, he happily made his way towards the first resting area.
In contrast with the hardships of climbing up, going down was as smooth as sliding down a slide. He breezed through it and quickly arrived near the resting area.
The group appeared sleeping but was actually training their senses using energy. Nik was the first to apply energy in sensing his surroundings. He just advced everyone to practice it if they liked.
Jun thought that they were sleeping since everyone's eyes were close, but felt weird since people have a hard time sleeping while sitting down. Besides, the ground is rough and its already getting dark, the mostquitoes and the cold should be getting into them.
Right as he stepped into the resting area, Nik opened his eyes and everyone else followed. Jun was still five meters away when that happened.
\"I thought you guys were sleeping.\" said Jun a he approached the group.
NIk stood up and stoicly explained what they were doing.
Jun listened attentively since the skill seemed useful. It was one of those hidden skills that doesn't register as a skill just like his Empowered Strike and he's newly learnt one, Reinforce.
Nik guided him on what to do and followed his every instruction.
He covered his whole body with a thin layer of energy and stabilized it. Then, he slowly made it expand outwards. He closed his eyes to ensure that he could really feel and learn how the skill works.
The skill consumed 1 energy per second as he stabilized the energy that covered his body. When he expanded the skill outwards, he saw a hazy vision of everyone staring at him in surprise. At the same time, he could feel his energy being drained twice than the usual rate.
He quickly stopped the skill and opened his eyes. He breathed deeply and shook his head. Since he was still on low energy, the skill learning process almost caused him to pass out. If he was to use this skill at its full potential, he could barely activate it for a minute.
He can't use all of his energy to this skill since he needs to use other skills while leaving some for reserves. Jun shook his head to express his current view of the skill.
\"This isn't that good. It drains energy too fast. We'll pass out if we use this in battle.\"
As he finished talking, he noticed that everyone was looking at him as if he was a monster.
\"What? Did I say something wrong?\"
Jun blinked his eyes as he looked at everyone confused at the situation.
\"Y-you did it, right?\" asked Nik.
\"What do you mean?\"
\"Y-you learned the skill right?\"
\"Yeah, I did. Why? Is there something wrong?\"
\"How did you do it? I mean, you learned it on your first try... how?\"
Nik appeared dejected since he took half an hour just to grasp the basics of the skill. Then another half of an hour to apply it and master it. He was actually the fastest one among the group and the second fastest took almost two hours to barely activate the skill.
He then narrated how long it took them to learn the skill and it made Jun frown.
After hearing his narration, Jun speculated that the problem might be coming from their ineffecient energy since all of them have the same problem with learning and training the skill.
In the end, Jun guessed that it might be because he have a higher energy pool than everybody else which led to a faster and easier energy control.
Jun doesn't know that this is the result of him eating an Energy Fruit from the Tree of Life. The fruit cleansed his energy and made it purer which resulted in a denser and stronger energy.
After coming to the conclusion that they just don't have enough energy, the group finally went back to Black Haven. Everyone channeled energy into their teleportation rune inside their bodies. The runes expanded out from their stomach and circled around their bodies. Then, with a blink of an eye, everyone disappeared together with bright lights.
The resting place dimmed and finally succumb to darkness.
In a distant two-storied building's window, a man was watching everything through a binocular.
The room he was in was empty. He stepped back from the window and turned around. The door was barricaded with numerous furniture; sofa's, tables and chairs.
The man looked sideways iritably.
\"Why did you bring them here?\" he said. On the other side of the door were several carriers pounding heavily on the door. \"There's too many houses here and you decided to run back to our meet up place. How are we going to return now? The group will be worried. They need our supplies!\"
\"Shut up Emman!\" yelled the woman who was being scolded. \"If you're not going to say something worth listening to, then shut up. I'm thinking here.\"
The woman went inside one of the rooms and brought out a long white sheet.
\"Erin, Fuck you! You actually have the nerve to shout at me?! You're the one that brought them here, so it's you're fault.\"
The woman, Erin, didn't appreciate his tone and glared at him. She slowly stood up and pulled a kitchen knife from her back. She then showed it to Emman, who nervously stared at the knife.
\"I only ran back here because you have a crossbow while I only have a knife. So, if you're going to ask me why we're in this situation, it's because you're a fucking pussy!\"
His face darkened as he watched Erin cut the sheet into two and tied the end on the window.
\"Are we jumping out? You know my leg hasn't healed up!\" said Emman panickly.
\"Its just an option! Just an option.\" replied Erin. \"Now, we don't have to jump out if you start using that crossbow. What's your decision?\"
Emman gulped as he lowered his head. He then looked sideways and avoided her gaze. Afterwards, he mumbled something and Erin wasn't able to clearly hear what he said.
\"What did you say?\"
\"I-I said I don't know how to. I mean I'm not good at it.\"
\"What do you mean? Didn't you just shot one down earlier?\"
Emman scratched his forehead. \"It was a lucky shot. I had my eyes closed when I fired.\"
Erin who was listening to what Emman was saying tilted her head as she slowly stood up. She then stared at his eyes and determined from his fearful eyes that he was telling the truth.
\"What a fucking liar. You told the group that you're a good shot and even volunteered for watch duty! Everyone really got lucky sleeping under your watch!\"
Emman gulped at her words. He couldn't argue with her since she was speaking the truth. He also felt bad for lying but he had to do it, so he could be treated fairly well in the group.
It was true that he have a crossbow, but it wasn't his! He doesn't know how to use it and only has bare knowledge of how to reload and aim. He's an office worker who has a younger brother who likes hunting.
He was supposed to be on the way to his work but he woke up late when this shit happened. And since his brother was nowhere to be seen, he took his younger brother's gear and holed up inside their house. Days after days passed by with no signs of his younger brother returning.
He watched everything that happens on the road from the window of his room. He never left the house to look for his brother.
Days passed with him idly staying at home and when food started to run out, that's the only time when he realized that he needed to learn how to use the crossbow. But it was too late and he basically had no talent. He then found the neighborhood group after compiling every information he got for watching everything from his window.
This is his first supply run together with the group's veteran, who have been doing this from the start.
What happened earlier was that Erin came back and brought a bunch of angry friends. As he watched Erin climb up the stairs, yelling at him to shoot those zombies chasing her, he panicked.
He froze and barely fired when Erin passed by him. The shot hit the carriers body and dragged the others back down the stairs.
There were only four carriers and if they fought them at the staircase, everything would have been finished already. But Emman decided to back off and hole up at one of the rooms. He's reasoning said that if they just hide, those angry friends would just leave.
Yeah, they could have.
If he wasn't panicking inside the room and sometimes yelling, asking Erin what to do.
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